World Cup qualifiers: Cranes won’t play for pride against Congo

Uganda Cranes captain Dennis Onyango has said the team will go out to play for something in their last World Cup qualifying game over the weekend.

Uganda will visit Congo Brazaville in their last group E game with nothing to fight for after blowing their chances of qualifying the World Cup in Russia when they were held to a nil all draw last month, giving chance to Egypt to qualify for the biggest football competition.

However according to skipper Onyango, all is not lost and Cranes will try to redeem its lost glory when the visit Congo Brazaville.

“The game means a lot because we need to get momentum towards the next campaign,”Onyango told journalists on Thursday after the team’s last training before flying to Congo.

“We need to fight and finish strong like we started the campaign.”

Onyango, who was chosen as the best goalkeeper in the World Cup qualifiers believes Uganda needs to use their last game as a spring board to improve in FIFA rankings so as to take advantage of the benefits that come with a better rank.

“We want to get higher in the rankings because when you get higher rank, you are seeded. Seeded teams play weaker teams in qualifiers.”

The Cranes custodian says there is need to give momentum for the young players who would be coming to replace the old guns in the future.

On a sad note, Onyango says the team despite having clean sheets has not been scoring enough, something he said needs to be improved.

For the team’s interim coach, Moses Basena a win against Congo would help the team finish a better position as the 2018 Russia World Cup Qualifiers comes to an end.

“We didn’t go for the first slot , we now want to go for the second one. It helps the country and everyone in terms of the next draws,”Basena said.

“It helps everybody be it my personal CV or the CVs for the players.No one would want to be on a losing side.”

The Cranes tactician however believes it has been a splendid journey in the World Cup qualifiers.

Egypt are top of group E with twelve points and qualified for the World Cup finals in Russia whereas Uganda are second on eight points.

Uganda won twice, the same times as they lost in their group E qualifying games and have conceded only twice in the five games they have played.


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